Walk-up Corn­wall

Seaway News - - Opinion - NICK SEEBRUCH ni­cholas.seebruch@tc.tc

I learned some­thing about Corn­wall last week. I had been told this about Corn­wall be­fore, but never re­al­ized how true it was un­til the OHL game that took place on Labour Day at the Corn­wall Civic Com­plex.

I’m not talk­ing about how Corn­wall is a hockey town, that one I’ve heard be­fore, but what I didn’t re­al­ize was how true it was that Corn­wall is a “last minute” or “walk up” town.

Jan­ice Robin­son at the Com­plex told me that out of the 1,800 tick­ets sold for the game, only 800 were sold in ad­vance, less than half. I my­self bought my ticket for the game only an hour in ad­vance.

There was no line-up at the box of­fice when I went to get my ticket, when I came back at around 15 min­utes be­fore ice-time though, there was a line-up from the box of­fice and out the door of people wait­ing to get their tick­ets. Even af­ter the puck dropped to start the game there was still a lengthy line of last minute walk-ups.

This is some­thing that both event or­ga­niz­ers and event go­ers need to un­der­stand.

Event or­ga­niz­ers or char­i­ties should re­mem­ber that just be­cause they haven’t sold a lot of tick­ets in ad­vance, that doesn’t mean that the event won’t be suc­cess­ful.

That be­ing said, some larger events live and die by ad­vance ticket sales. Con­cert or­ga­niz­ers and other sim­i­lar types of events might choose to can­cel if they do not sell a lot of tick­ets in ad­vance. Ad­vance tick­ets sales is also a fac­tor for sports fran­chises.

This is all im­por­tant to con­sider when think­ing about get­ting a new OHL fran­chise in Corn­wall. I think that if any­one wants to start a grass­roots move­ment to bring an OHL team to Corn­wall, they should start by gath­er­ing a sig­nif­i­cant group of people to­gether who would com­mit to buy­ing sea­son tick­ets in ad­vance.

Prospec­tive fran­chise own­ers could also learn from the mis­takes of the mar­ket­ing strat­egy for this re­cent OHL ex­hi­bi­tion game. No ads were bought in lo­cal me­dia to pro­mote the game, and if the or­ga­niz­ers feel that their ad­vance ticket sales were lack­ing, then this is a big rea­son why.

I ran a poll this week on our Face­book page to see how many of our read­ers would buy a sea­son ticket. It was split closely down the mid­dle with about half of re­spon­dents say­ing that they would get a sea­son ticket to sup­port a lo­cal OHL team.

Again, if some­one has a pas­sion for hockey and they want to get and keep an OHL fran­chise, then Corn­wall can’t be a “last minute, walk- up” town, tick­ets must be bought in ad­vance to show the strength of this mar­ket for that prod­uct. If I po­ten­tial fran­chisee wants to test the wa­ters to see if Corn­wall is a vi­able mar­ket for the OHL, then the next time an op­por­tu­nity like the Labour Day OHL ex­hi­bi­tion game comes around, they must have an ad­e­quate mar­ket­ing cam­paign.

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